Local Politics

Judge: Edwards' mistress can't adjust lawsuit

Posted July 14, 2010 8:46 p.m. EDT
Updated July 17, 2010 3:36 p.m. EDT

— Superior Court Judge Carl Fox denied a motion Wednesday from John Edwards' mistress to amend a lawsuit she filed in January so she could seek restitution from a tell-all book written by an aide to the two-time presidential candidate.

Attorneys for Rielle Hunter argued last week in a Hillsborough court that she should receive money made on Andrew Young's book.

Hunter alleges in court documents that Andrew Young used videos and photos taken from her to wrangle a publishing deal for his book, "The Politician," and a possible movie.

Hunter, a former campaign worker who gave birth to Edwards' daughter, sued Young in January, claiming that he took a videotape that purportedly shows Edwards engaged in extramarital sex and photographs of him with his daughter.

In March, Young surrendered in court copies of the sex tape and CDs filled with photos. The items will be kept under seal until the lawsuit is resolved.

Young, who pretended to be the father of Hunter's child during the 2008 presidential campaign, has said that he kept the video and photos solely to corroborate his story and never used them for publicity or profit.

He also contends that Hunter abandoned the property in a rented house in Chatham County and that she cannot claim he invaded her privacy because she has openly discussed her affair with Edwards in television and magazine interviews.

Young's attorneys contended during a recent court hearing that Edwards might have been dodging a subpoena for a deposition in the case.

Edwards' attorney, Jim Cooney, sent a letter to Fox saying no one has tried to serve a subpoena on Edwards.

"Sen. Edwards does not object to providing testimony on the relevant issues in this case," Cooney wrote. "Quite frankly, however, I can represent to the court that Sen. Edwards has no personal or factual knowledge concerning the central issue in this case – whether Ms. Hunter abandoned the tape or whether the Youngs stole it."

Edwards will be out of the country for several weeks with his estranged wife, Elizabeth, and their children, Cooney said, so any deposition will have to be done after his return.